El extraño caso de la desigualdad del ingreso en Estados Unidos

BERKELEY – A menos que en 2014 ocurra algo muy inesperado, el nivel de PIB real per cápita de Estados Unidos alcanzará y superará el de 2007. No son buenas noticias.

¿Por qué? Consideremos que durante los dos ciclos económicos anteriores a la caída de 2007, el PIB real per cápita de la economía estadounidense creció a un ritmo anual promedio del 2%. De hecho, así fue a lo largo de más o menos un siglo. Así, hoy el producto estadounidense está siete años (o un 14%) por debajo del nivel que se podía esperar razonablemente en 2007. Y no hay nada a la vista que pueda hacerle volver, o siquiera acercarse, al crecimiento anterior a la crisis financiera de 2008. El único consuelo (bastante deprimente, por cierto) es que a Europa y Japón les está yendo mucho peor en comparación con ese año.

Por tanto, la insuficiencia del rendimiento per cápita anual de la economía estadounidense en 2014 equivaldrá a $9000 por persona al año que no se habrán destinado a productos de consumo, vacaciones ni inversiones, entre otros. Para fines de 2014 el coste de oportunidad perdida acumulado per cápita debido a la crisis y sus secuelas habrá ascendido a cerca de $60.000.

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